View Full Version : What should I show for an expo

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Russ Q
06-28-2013, 07:55 PM
Hey all,

We're having a wee Martial Arts Expo where I live...I will be showing the Aikido portion. (There will be Hapkido, Shito Ryu Karate and Systema too). We all have an hour to instruct. My question is: What would you show within those time limits to express the essence of aikido....hmmmm?

Thanks in advance,


Janet Rosen
06-29-2013, 01:59 AM
Hi, Russ! What a cool thing to take part in. I would think that weapons kata and randori/jiyuwaza would be good to include. If you have a kids' program, definitely include them in a demo!

Krystal Locke
06-29-2013, 03:24 AM
A long time ago, I went to a multi-art demonstration. The other aikido dojo in town was participating, and I wanted to watch. A local kung-fu san soo group that touted itself as a hard core deadly art fighting school dragged out some mats and showed a few sweeps and throws. It was pretty nice, cool stuff, basic controlled takedowns with basic ukemi. The audience clapped appreciatively while the school folded up their mats. Once the gym floor was bare, the aikido school did a rocking randori with much flying fun ukemi while the sensei talked about loving protection, using attackers' energy and conflict resolution. Crowd went absolutely nuts.

Yall's ukemi up for something like that? It was terribly effective.

Seriously, the hapkido school and the systema group are likely going to show much the same stuff as an aikido group would, look for differences and show those. Like Janet said, randori and weapons might give you some unique material. Talking about the history and philosophy of the art as your school practices it may be good.

Russ Q
06-29-2013, 05:38 PM
Thanks Janet and Krystal, will likely do a demo portion but also teaching for a short time...



06-29-2013, 06:42 PM
In college, while I was in my Muay Thai days, I attended a very clean, effective demo once where the instructor stood and spoke briefly about the difference between training, being safe and supportive with your partners during training, as compared to self-defensive, real world application. Being American, he used the cliché of, "taking the gloves off."

He had a great uke, to start with, big, athletic looking and moving guy who looked like he could fight if he had to - sort of key for a believable demo nowadays due to the prevalence of UFC- there, and another key, his uke had great ukemi.

He spoke about the effectiveness of aikido in self-defense, but pointed out what most of us know, you can't train full-speed to technical termination as joints rupture, bones break, people fall in unsafe manners damaging themselves, like that ... i.e. you end up with no training partners.

So, he proceeded to show a few techniques in a kata format, all very tight and precise, flowing and smooth, and pointed out that he was in the middle of a practical teaching exercise and that with a person who was actively trying to hurt him, he would "take the gloves off and it would automatically transform into this..."

Anyone who's been in class for more than a few months can imagine the difference in look/feel of what he was doing, going from smooth kata practice to demonstration of applications. It looked and sounded painful. The other, beautiful and serene.

It was a dramatic contrast to the taekwondo and kung fu demonstrations going on both before and after. It was fun to watch, and I am sure he got inquiries from several people about becoming students.

Russ Q
06-30-2013, 04:41 PM
Thanks John!


Lyle Laizure
06-30-2013, 05:50 PM
Show what you find fun and exciting about Aikido.

07-01-2013, 06:13 PM
No problem Russ, knock 'em dead at the expo.

Them being spectators, not the guys/gals volunteering their bodies to you for said demo! Ha!

Drop a line when the demo's over and describe what you did and how it went over.

Russ Q
07-02-2013, 02:49 PM
Will do!


Russ Q
08-12-2013, 01:23 PM
Hi Everyone,

Just a quick update. We had the expo yesterday and I have to say, all things considered, it was a great success. We're a relatively small regional area outside of Vancouver. Our total population is 25,000 people and we had a turn out of about 25 martial artists. I focused on irimi for the aikido portion. The form took shape with a two handed throat grab resulting in irimi tenkan and ending with kotegaeshi and another with sumiotoshi. The Hapkido/Jiujistu instructor gave us a the breakdown of a haymaker to clinch to hip throw to arm bar (tons of fun btw!). The Shito Ryu karate instructor focused on the difference between application and sparring/point fighting. The four senior students with this group also show an advanced kata. The systema instructor focused on breath and sensitivity (pretty amazing progress for a one hour class). We were doing group work with our eyes closed too! All in all a great day of learning and exchange with all participants leaving their egos at the door and being open minded to what was presented. We also raised $450 for our local food bank! We will do this again next year:)

08-12-2013, 02:41 PM
Congratulations, Russ!

-- Jun

Janet Rosen
08-12-2013, 05:24 PM